So a couple months after my brother and I moved in with my paternal grandmother, my father was told that I was killing her. That I was a wild feral child. I think part of it too, was that being under 2 years of age, I was more high maintenance; there were diapers to change, naps, special foods and maybe a bit of excess energy too. My grandmother was a refined woman and I’m sure that children were meant to be seen and not heard, I was likely seen, heard, and smelled!

1967 11

My Brother and I at the Beach

1967 19

Me without a care in the world, my brother happy to be looking down on me.

Not wishing to to commit matricide, my father packed me up again, separated me from my brother, and sent me off to live with my maternal grandparents about 10 miles away. I have moved from that the City that was the capital of Canada, to a town in Portugal and now was being downgraded to a farming village. My maternal grandparents were dirt poor peasant farmers living in a small stone house with no running water or other utilities. There was no bathroom, outhouse, fireplace, refrigerator or anything else. This was as basic as life got short of moving to the Amazon. This was even tougher for me, because now I was living with total strangers and didn’t even have my brother to accompany me.


Left to Right (My maternal grandmother, maternal grandfather, paternal grandmother). In the village square of what was to become my new home – Toxofal.


The village square today, much cleaner and paved.  This little square became a huge part of my life for sometime. The picture of me above was taken in front of the area circled red, which is a church that dates back many centuries. 

Things seemed dark at this stage of my young life,  but Life is Great because sometimes what seems like a bad turn of events turns out to be a great adventure.



One thought on “#10: THINGS GOT WORSE!

  1. Lynne

    So true life has a way of taking where you need to be in life, and having to live without all the comforts we take for granted you now appreciate the comforts more then some we know ……


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